Portable Bluetooth speakers are in demand and almost all manufacturers, branded and unbranded, have ventured into that space.
Jawbone’s Mini Jambox has launched a cute and designer speaker which is pocketable. The attractiveness of the speaker is that it is made from a single anodised aluminium shell with nine different colours and grill styles.
The device is light and weighs just 255 grams but that does not mean it is not sturdy. It is lightweight and sturdy and can be easily slipped into a pocket.
The volume, play/pause/call answer buttons are on top of the device while the power on/off, pairing buttons, USB charging port and 3.5mm line in jack are on the right side of the device.
Jawbone being a Bluetooth-focused company, this device also can be paired only through Bluetooth. No near field communication (NFC) pairing is available.
Before pairing it, the Jawbone app has to be downloaded from the app stores of Google or Apple. Pairing is easy with the help of voice-guided instructions and tells you when it is connected with a male or female voice. Users can select their own male of female voice in nine different languages.
When pressing the power button to turn on the device, the audio voice will tell when the device is paired and how much battery is left.
The advantage of this is that eight devices can be paired to the speaker but only two at a time.
The device has two tweeters in the front and a sub-woofer in the back.
The speaker produces good sound quality but loses bass at full volume. The mid to high sounds were clear and pleasant. At full volume, the tiny speaker can alter its positions as the base does not have a rubber panel, except at the sides.
The sound produced is much bigger than from a smartphone and can easily fill a small room. But remember this device can no way fill an auditorium or a music party hall.
The one I liked is the LiveAudio feature. It delivers a three-dimensional sound. To add this feature, you need to install the Jawbone updater from the website before creating an account. Users can on and off the LiveAudio feature by pressing both the volume buttons at the same time. This app works with locally-listed playlists and some streaming service. Its relay does make the sound better and fuller. It is limited to mobile apps only.
The built-in speakerphone lets you take calls on the go. The speakerphone function is good but the sound at the receiving end is not clear and you have to be close to the device to hear. At the caller’s end, it is loud and clear.
It can read out the caller’s number as they come in when paired with the phone and can retrieve events from your calendar. For this to happen, tap the ‘Agenda’ button on the app and set the type of notifications you would like to hear. It allows you to reject or answer the call without touching your phone.
The battery life is very good given the size of the speaker. It lasts more than nine hours even though Jawbone has promised 10 hours of life. It may give 10 hours depending on at what volume levels you listen. The power automatically cuts off when not paired with a device.
The company bundled the Mini Jambox with a single USB cable and one audio cable. It is priced at Dh799.
• Compact size
• Good battery life
• Sturdy aluminum shell
• Beautiful design with different colours
• Good sound at low to mid volumes
• Distorts at high volumes
• Bass distorts at full volume
• Not idle for taking phone calls
• No NFC pairing
• Bit expensive